The San Diego Padres had gone 151 consecutive days without playing a baseball game. Nearly five months passed, and with each passing day, the team failed to play baseball. That ugly streak came to a welcome end on Thursday at 12:05 p.m., under a glorious partly cloudy sky in Peoria, Arizona, when umpire Jordan Baker yelled “Play ball,” and Mariner starting pitcher Erasmo Ramirez threw a fastball past Padres center fielder Cameron Maybin for a called strike. After a long winter, the Padres were, once again, playing a game of baseball.
There were certainly signs that the team hadn’t played in nearly half a year. Six pitchers combined to allow 10 hits and seven runs. The lineup, which did not include starters Carlos Quentin, Chase Headley, Everth Cabrera, and Will Venable, managed only five hits and a single run. The defense committed four errors. But there were positive signs as well. Two of the pitchers threw hitless innings. The team stole two bases. There were a few slick plays in the field.
So there was some good, and some bad. On this day, a little more bad than good.
But that doesn’t matter a bit. Only one thing matters, and that is that the Padres are playing baseball again. The long, terrible streak… is over.